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Problems of 2 NZEF



For the first two years of the war the head of the Ordnance Corps was stationed at HQ 2 NZEF. Like the medical head, he was first appointed as head of the corps in the Division (ADOS) but very soon became DDOS of 2 NZEF, and another officer took up the divisional appointment. At the outset there was ample justification for a separate 2 NZEF head, for all our initial equipment had to be drawn and there were developments in the maintenance of mechanical transport, the Ordnance Corps at that time being responsible for mechanical work also. Once issues of equipment were governed page 118 by battle losses or by wear and tear, the work of the Ordnance Corps became more routine and there was not the same justification for keeping a senior officer at Headquarters. The DDOS at the time voiced this opinion himself. His services were then accepted in a senior appointment with the British Army, and the responsibility for all ordnance work in 2 NZEF passed to the ADOS of the Division. An assistant to this officer was stationed at HQ 2 NZEF. When the subdivision of the Ordnance Corps took place in late 1942 - see below - a separate ordnance officer did not stay with Headquarters, the duties being largely taken over by the officer in charge of our expanding base ordnance depot.

In 1942 the British Army split up the Ordnance Corps into two portions - one, retaining the name of Ordnance, to confine itself to provision, and the other, a new ‘Electrical and Mechanical Engineers’, to be responsible for technical maintenance. After some slight hesitation, we decided to follow suit, and the new corps of NZEME was formed in December 1942, its head being the senior officer with the Division, the CREME. An assistant to this officer was stationed at HQ 2 NZEF.